Some of the music that I like the most is the kind that will make me start tapping on whatever I can lay my hands upon while boosting my energy levels. Usually when a band is able to make me feel the energy within the first few seconds of the first song that I hear I end up liking the songs. The First song ‘Plans’ opens with a slow piano melody then the guitar picks up a few beats in where the two sounds blend really well together. This opening few seconds of Side One of Planted by Cowgill caught my attention with it’s beat and tempo of these two instruments. Then the vocals of Paul Cowgill come into the song that at first wasn’t to my liking but as the song played I grew to like the way his voice sounded.
Planted has beats that ooze fun and good times that have incorporated quirky beats, up and down tempos, and lyrics that are small stories being told. The vocals of Paul Cowgill has a variety of vocal ranges that like with the first song ‘Plans’ has a lower, slower pitch to them at the start but by the end he raises his vocals and picks up the speed of his singing. Paul Cowgill will sing a few notes high pitched, then quickly going into a low, flat sound, as well as having the songs sounding like a mix of indie rock, pop rock, and alternative rock. I got to admit that Paul Cowgill has a good, strong voice and he has the ability to make the songs sound fun when he’s singing but the at times the lyrics he sung seemed to just be put in to give the song some extra sound. He’s put the energy into his vocals that I like to hear but there are times that the lyrics themselves are just him going no no no, yeah yeah yeah, oh la na yeah and so on. At times I will like this, at times I won’t, it’s one of those things that can really make a song a lot of fun to sing along with or it can make the song just sound like it’s someone singing yeah, yeah, yeah over and over again. Paul Cowgill falls on the edge, some of the times that I listened to the songs I enjoyed the repeating of the few one word lyrics, but there were also times that it just got tiresome.
For the most part I enjoyed the instrumentals more than I did the vocals. They contain good beats that give the songs their true power of being fun. Their presence in the songs is not overwhelming nor do they just take backstage to the vocals. These instrumentals are played where once the lyrics have been learned it would be easy enough to take them away and still keep up with the beat of the song. Each song is a different song, the beats being played actually sound different from the last song, and the vocals are being sung in different ranges from slow to quick to even some loud yelling, it all combines for a set of fun songs. It’s especially noticeable when listening to the song Red Carpet after having 3 songs of a high energy, quick beats, but this song comes out of nowhere with it’s slower tempo, the low key vocals (which by the way this is the best song for Paul Cowgill with his singing) and easy played beats. With only 5 tracks on this album Cowgill has been able to give a set of songs that are fun to listen to with enough energy in the songs to make me tap along with them as they play and wait for Side Two to be released.